Blog February 6, 2019

Key Takeaways from RE:Invent 2018

This year’s Amazon flagship conference for AWS, known as RE:Invent, was held over 5 days in Las Vegas and was one of the largest cloud conferences in the world. AWS experts met with over 20,000 attendees, members of the media, and analysts and over the course of the conference, there were several notable takeaways.

Competition is Approaching, But AWS is Still the Leader

The CEO of AWS, Andy Jassy, delivered the major keynote and the first twenty minutes was dedicated to the competition. Showing their dominant lead while giving the impression that AWS is cautiously watching its back, Jassy was sure to point out that AWS provides significantly more offerings within each product category than the competition and that it’s still the clear choice for enterprise clients.

Product Changes

There were multiple product releases, updates, and additional features announced, as well as improvements to the security management and compliance of AWS services.

Here are some of the key announcements that should be of interest to the cloud computing community:

  • Amazon is entering the blockchain services space. Jassy discussed two new services in this area: a managed blockchain offering and the Quantum Ledger Database where customers can replicate a copy of their blockchain network activity.
  • AWS Lambda received a ton of updates for better usability, integration, and language support as they see this as the next-gen solution for building certain applications on the cloud.
  • AWS Outpost is competitive with Azure Stack and allows you to buy a rack of AWS servers and have AWS in your datacenter or your edge location. While not all services are supported, it does support VMware version of Amazon and runs EC2, ECS, RDS, etc and is fully managed by Amazon.
  • There were multiple S3/Glacier announcements, including Glacier deep archive, new network filesystems, and smart/auto-tiering.
  • AWS now runs satellite ground stations and with your NORAD ID and FCC license, you can rent ground station time to your satellite in low earth (and higher) orbit.
  • They introduced new marketplaces for ML algorithms, private marketplaces (blessed packages), and containers.
  • With RoboMaker you can build intelligent robotics applications including simulation, integration, and deployment with SageMaker and other Machine Learning products.
AWS Inferentia

One way that AWS is making it easier for us to build and manage applications is with AWS Inferentia, a machine learning inference chip custom designed to deliver low latency inference performance and high throughput at an extremely low cost. This will support the Apache MXNet, PyTorch, and TensorFlow deep learning frameworks, as well as models that use the ONNX format.

Advances in AI in the Cloud

Cascadeo launched its AI-powered AIOps Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) managed service platform at RE:Invent 2018. Using a combination of automated deployment, machine learning, and predictive analytics combined with the AWS serverless technology platform, the system automates a significant part of the managed service provider offerings and customer onboarding process. By foregoing human power and utilizing automation, companies can offer managed services for just hundreds of dollars a month as opposed to tens of thousands of dollars like these types of services generally cost.

Demonstrating an AI-powered cybersecurity system, Cylance introduced us to CylancePROTECT: the company’s endpoint threat prevention solution that utilizes AI to identify and block malware execution, whether known or unknown, in real-time, without signatures or referencing repositories of known threats. It utilizes machine learning to deliver predictive security products for detection, prevention, and response of emerging cybersecurity threats and utilizes specialized security services to enhance the security of technology assets. Cylance uses artificial intelligence to enable more agile response to memory protection, malware threats and threat hunting, application and script control, root cause analysis, and device policy enforcement. This allows the system to combat weaponized documents, ransomware, sophisticated malware, malicious scripts, and other emerging threats without having to be hardcoded to recognize those threats in advance.

Exciting Times

RE:Invent is one of our favorite events each year not just because of the introduction of new technology, but because of what that technology can mean to our partners. Our expertise in offering fully managed cloud solutions means that Connectria can offer partners access to and expertise around even the newest AWS offerings without missing a beat.

With the announcements at RE:Invent this year and the advancements across the board, having AWS in your corner just makes sense. AWS is often the best choice for mid-market and SMBs, and as an AWS MSP, Connectria can provide you with the AWS management you need in order to build out the AWS portion of your managed services business. Whether you simply need a new team or you’re looking for your first partnership, contact us today.

 

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